Creating a mission statement for your company sounds simple enough – just summarize the values and goals of your organization. But many companies stumble in the actual writing of that mission statement. After all, how do you effectively encapsulate your “why?”
Before you get started creating a mission statement, you’ll need to determine your company’s mission. For some, this is an easy exercise. For example:
|“We are a small software company. Our goal is to create innovative solutions for small-to-medium sized businesses that help them find the best employee healthcare options for their organizations.”|
That may be your company’s goal and what it provides to clients, but a mission statement should go beyond that to share what your company means to employees and to the community as well.
You may have heard the saying, “a camel is a horse designed by committee,” and, often, the more people you have working on something, the more it creeps outside of the scope of your original intention. However, in the case of company mission statements, it’ a great idea to get input from a wide array of people.
A good way to solicit this feedback is to survey employees. And there are some basic questions you can ask, including:
Getting these insights from a wide range of people can help provide a fresh perspective and help you include ideas you otherwise wouldn’t have thought of.
Once you have input, narrow down the following answers to these critical questions:
While it’s difficult to take all of that information and turn it into a brief paragraph or two that encapsulates the mission of your organization, one of the most important things you can do it judiciously edit and refine the information you’ve gathered. Don’t be afraid to start over if your final product doesn’t resonate with you. When you do find the statement that fits your company, add it to your employee handbook so it quickly becomes the cornerstone of your company.
It is often helpful to have inspiration examples of truly effective company mission statements. While they’re not to copy, reading a few samples can help unlock your creativity.
“Organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” Since the beginning, the goal has been to develop services that significantly improve the lives of as many people as possible. Not just for some. For everyone.
The mission of The Walt Disney Company is to be one of the world’s leading producers and providers of entertainment and information.
To build the web’s most convenient, secure, cost-effective payment solution.
To help bring creative projects to life.
To collect, preserve, study, exhibit, and stimulate appreciation for, and advance knowledge of, works of art that collectively represent the broadest spectrum of human achievement at the highest level of quality, all in the service of the public and in accordance with the highest professional standards.
The construction of your company’s mission statement is no easy feat. Those two to three sentences may read simply, but require real soul-probing to produce. Be sure to tap into a solid mix of feedback, take a pass at multiple drafts, learn from others who have done it well, and you’ll have a mission statement that engagees employees even on the toughest days.